Physiotherapists are experts in movement, from the way you move your backs or limbs, to the way you breathe. Physiotherapists work to restore function and activity and prevent illness and injury, to give people the independence to remain in work and in their own homes.

The work of a physiotherapist

Patients are normally referred to a physiotherapist by a doctor. The physiotherapist assesses them and decides upon the most appropriate treatment. This treatment might involve:

  • exercise
  • movement
  • hydrotherapy
  • electrotherapy
  • techniques such as massage and manipulation

Physiotherapists play a large role in rehabilitating people after illness or accidents. Health education, aimed at preventing disease and injury, is also an important part of the work.

Skills required

Being responsible for assessing and treating your own caseload of patients demands a high level of knowledge and expertise. Rigorous training will ensure that you have the necessary clinical skills.

Personal qualities such as good communication skills, empathy and the ability to work as part of a team are also essential.

Training programme

Ulster University offers a BSc Hons Physiotherapy undergraduate full-time four-year programme.

You should contact the university directly for the latest entry requirements and applications should be made through Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

Career pathway

Once you have had some clinical experience, you could specialise in any one of a range of areas, such as:

  • neurology
  • orthopaedics
  • obstetrics
  • working with older people

There is a recognised promotional pathway within Northern Ireland Health and Social Care (HSC).

Professional recognition

Graduates of the course are eligible for registration with the statutory regulator for physiotherapists - the Health Professions Council (HPC) and membership of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.

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